EQTEC PLC (LON:EQT) Chief Executive Officer Ian Price caught up with DirectorsTalk for an exclusive interview to discuss the £1.5 million cash into the business, funding routes, the drivers behind the opportunities in the waste to energy sector and the potential for the company.
Q1: EQTEC announced today the receipt of £1.5 million, could you explain to us the background behind this?
A1: Altair Group Investment Limited is one of the long-term shareholders of the company and they were issued warrants as part of the reorganisation of some loan facilities back in 2017 and 2018, they’re a private investment vehicle and they’ve been significant stakeholder in the company since 2015. They’ve always been supportive of the company and since our refocus of the business following my joining the company in August, they have been open to providing some additional funding to the company.
We received notification of their intention to exercise the warrants held by them and one of their wholly owned subsidiaries, Ecofinance (GLI) Limited, on the 4th March. As you mentioned, this will bring almost £1.5 million of cash into the business which will used to fund the working capital of the business and deliver on the company’s business plan. The issue of these new shares also comes with an agreed 90-day lock in period where the shares cannot be traded and also a further 90-day orderly market agreement.
So, following this, Altair will have an increase equity position in the company, and we see this as evidence from our longstanding shareholders that they’ve got confidence in our business model and its growth potential.
We also understand that the block trade that was executed by Altair at the same time was with an institutional investor who understands the waste to energy space and obviously, has the intention to be involved in the company for the long-term.
Q2: What other funding routes are you currently looking at?
A2: The company has a number of existing funding options open to it, including the recently increased loan facilities with Altair and with the existing facility with the Cuart Investments Fund. Essentially, this combined with the receipts from the exercise of the warrants I think leave us well positioned to take the company forward.
Q3: There appears to be a lot of opportunity in the waste to energy sector, could you describe the drivers behind this and the potential for EQTEC?
A3: The fundamentals for the sector I think are better than ever, as a society and particularly linked to population, there’s an increase in the amount of waste being produced which needs to be managed in the proper way. There’s also an increase in demand for energy so recovering energy from waste really is a win-win scenario.
We have strict regulation and policy with regard to waste management and we’re encouraged to reduce, reuse, recycle what we can before we think about using the trash can but ultimately, there always is a trash can. We ned assistance to deal with this particular waste and then preferred option, historically, has been landfill but this is not a long-term option particularly concerns over fugitive methane emissions and potential other pollutants can contribute significantly to climate change.
EQTEC is a supplier of patented industrial-style technology which converts waste produced by households and businesses into a useful synthetic gas, syngas, which we then use to produce energy in the form of electricity, steam and heat. This conversion process is called gasification and that’s what we do.
We are currently responding to requests of proposals to develop projects around our technology in the UK, wider Europe, in the USA and in the Far East and I think our technology is truly capable of being deployed globally and at scale.
So, from our perspective, it’s a very exciting time to be involved in the sector and we’re working hard to source the best project opportunities to deliver on our business plan.